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Excellent teachers up for awards

Media Release

20 May 2005

Excellent teachers up for awards

If a teacher at your child’s early childhood centre, primary, intermediate or secondary school is doing an excellent job, nominate them for an ASG National Excellence in Teaching Award (NEiTA).

The 2005-2006 round of NEiTA is now accepting nominations from parents for all categories and from secondary school students for secondary teachers - perhaps their harshest critics or greatest admirers.

The awards aim to recognise and honour excellent teachers in local communities, to raise the status of teaching and to encourage excellence in the teaching profession. Since they began in 1996, over 2,000 teachers have been nominated.

Last year, 52 percent of the teachers nominated were from the primary and intermediate school category. Early childhood teachers, a new entry to the awards, came second with 26 percent and secondary school teachers received 22 percent of the nominations.

Brother Pat Lynch, convener of New Zealand Selection Panel and member of NEiTA Advisory Council said the awards were an exciting opportunity for the consumers of education to support and celebrate teachers.

“We want to see teachers recognised for the wonderful job they do, in the same way we recognise sportspeople, celebrities, business and community leaders.

“Since excellent teachers have a profound effect on the development and future of the children they work with, this is an opportunity to acknowledge that. We all remember the great teachers in our lives,” says Pat Lynch.

All teachers nominated receive a certificate and in 2006, 20 regional awards and six national awards will be presented. Three of the six national award recipients will receive ASG Professional Development Grants, one of $5,000 and two of $2,500.

Nomination forms can be downloaded from the NEiTA website, They are also available from schools and early childhood centres nationwide, or can be obtained by telephoning the ASG Secretariat on (09) 366-7670. Nominations are open until 28 October 2005.


Background on ASG Scholarships Group

· ASG (the ASG Scholarships Group) is a not-for-profit organisation whose parent members work together to support the future education of their children.

· Formed over 30 years ago in Melbourne, ASG began operating in New Zealand in 1990.

· In September 1991, it became the first registered friendly society in New Zealand to issue a prospectus for education benefit programmes.

· Currently over 40,000 Kiwi parents are contributing to benefit programmes for their children’s tertiary and secondary education.

· ASG has assisted already more than 1700 students with tertiary scholarships and over 1500 with secondary schooling benefits.

· The main administration office of ASG is located in Auckland but it also has information centres in Mt Eden, Wellington, Christchurch and Tauranga.

· The latest combined Investment Statement for ASG’s benefit programmes was issued at the beginning of October 2004 and Prospectus in December 2004.

· ASG initiated NEiTA, the National Excellence in Teaching Awards in New Zealand in 1996, and has since received 2,000 nominations from parents, students and school communities of outstanding early childhood, primary, intermediate and secondary school teachers.

· In the 2003/2004 cycle of NEiTA, the following teachers were national award recipients:

Early childhood
Maree Orland*, Casa dei Bambini Foundation School, Christchurch
Laine Tipi, Leataata o Tupulaga Preschool, Massey, Auckland

Bernadette Lawlor**, St Joseph’s School, Queenstown
Elfrida Dhanaraj, Sir Douglas Bader Intermediate, Mangere, Auckland

Secondary School
Richard Gardiner*, Burnside High School, Christchurch
Robyn Restieaux, Macleans College, Bucklands Beach, Auckland

* Recipient of $2,500 ASG professional development grant

** Recipient of $5,000 ASG professional development grant

· For the last four years ASG has been the major sponsor of the ASG Parent and Child Show held annually in the September/October period in Auckland and Wellington, and every two years in Christchurch.

· Through a partnership with Plunket, ASG has made available through Plunket centres, Parent Briefings, a free Child Development information resource for parents with children aged from birth to five.

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